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Like The White Stripes before them, Wolfmother sounds both hip and retro at the same time. The quiver in vocalist Andrew Stockdale's voice during "Mind's Eye" may have been borrowed from Jack White. But then again, he might just have inherited such vocal attributes from the Led Zeppelin/Robert Plant projects in his classic rock record collection. Whatever the case, however, this band is clearly the beneficiary of wisely chosen musical influences.

Numerically, at least, (trio) Wolfmother fits neatly between Led Zeppelin (quartet), and The White Stripes (duo). The four tracks represented here all rock; but in a soulful hard rock way, rather than with heavy metal's usual clinical soulless-ness. During "Dimension," for instance, drummer Myles Heskett's primal pounding drives a groove, which -- if stripped down to its bare basics -- might just pass for a Motown beat. Stockdale is at his Jack White-ist, if you will, during "Love Train" when he sings many vocal parts with a yearning falsetto.

Wolfmother's metallic tendencies are also spiked with notable progressive leanings. This trait is especially expressed during "Mind's Eye," which goes into a Yes-like keyboard thing at one point. The group's organ fills often offer up smile-inducing flashbacks to '70s FM rock. With its long intro and pseudo-scientific title, "The Earth's Rotation Around The Sun" has prog-rock graffitied all over it.

It's not always obvious what Wolfmother is singing about here. Something like "Dimension" may allude to drug experiences, for instance. But then again, it may not be about drugs at all. "Love Train," however, finds Stockdale feeling the need to ride a more socially positive vehicle. It's a little bit like The O'Jays, albeit with guitars.

This brief recorded sampling reveals an act with an undeniable taste for blood, which makes you wish there were just a few more bands equally hungry like the Wolfmother.

-Dan MacIntosh

Track Listing:
1. Dimension
2. Mind's Eye
3. Love Train
4. The Earth's Rotation Around The Sun

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